Union wades into York council spat

A dispute at City of York Council hotted up this week when the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) called for the Liberal Democrat leader to apologise to a former council press officer.

The union has backed calls from former press officer Neil Sterio for councillor Steve Galloway to apologise for what Sterio claimed were accusations of bias towards the then ruling Labour Party.

But council chief executive David Atkinson said: ‘The Standards Committee found unanimously, on the basis of the evidence presented, that none of the complaints were supported by the information provided.’

The row began when Sterio accused Galloway of libelling him in emails accusing him of bias (PRWeek, 12 September 2003).

The NUJ joined the row after the council’s Standards Committee refused to consider the complaints. NUJ regional organiser Miles Barter said: ‘We may seek a judicial review about the way this committee is operated.

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